By LCHS 7/8 Principal, Dr. Jarrett Gold
As the former Assistant Principal at LCHS, a coach at the high school level for many years, and an athlete throughout my schooling, I believe athletics play an important role in students’ overall success in school. Through athletics, there are many core values that students gain, including integrity, teamwork, community, competitive spirit, leadership, and compassion. I learned many of these as an athlete and tried to instill these same characteristics as a coach.
I found middle school to be an awkward time in my life, as many of our students do. In high school I was able bring athletics and academics together, which helped me to find my path. While I have played sports my entire life, there is a uniqueness about playing for a school team; being a part of a team brought me a sense of pride that I had not previously experienced. Looking back, I wish I was able to have had the same opportunity in my middle school years.
On January 19th, I walked into the South Gym at 3:20, just moments before the start of the 8th grade boys basketball championship game. The 7/8 ASB made signs and posters to decorate the gym. Giving the team a little extra support, students, parents, and friends served as a solid fan base, watching intently and cheering on the team.
There was a look of pride in our students and on the face of Coach Arnett Mosley. I stood in the doorway and looked at the team, “La Canada” emblazoned across their chests, they were focused and had a visible level of intensity in their eyes. Seeing these student-athletes representing our school brought chills to my body. As I write this article, reflecting on our win and admiring the enormous trophy in my office, I can only hope these boys see that the games are more than the trophy or championship. I hope they begin to recognize it is about the overall experience, the values, and the friendships that are formed by being a part of a school team.
At 7/8 we offer 10 different sports, with 17 different teams, with over 345 students participating. Not all of our teams win championships, but they all represent LCHS 7/8. As I mentioned above, I never had the chance to play for my middle school, and think it is absolutely wonderful that our students are able to participate at their grade level. Our coaches at 7/8 take pride in teaching not only skills for the game, but more importantly, they teach these student-athletes core values. I am grateful for the support of PTA, Boosters, and LCUSD, which allows us to offer a variety of sports and to provide students with these important opportunities and experiences.